Environment - General
When looking at major global environmental issues, it is important not only to consider any local source of the problem, but we must also consider the reason why there is only a minimal effort being undertaken to improve the situation on a global scale.
The main reason behind the lack of support for the environment is the continuing apathy from political parties and politicians to change. The environment is not generally a big vote winner and so tends to be forgotten when it comes to policy and legislation. There is also limited funding for implementing environmental strategies. The governments in developed countries see the signing of agreements and the development of policy and legislation as the possible beginning to an economic downturn. For example, the United States, which is the largest producer of greenhouse gases, has refused to sign the Kyoto Protocol. This is because it would require them to reduce their emissions more than any other country and they do not wish to commit to that responsibility economically. The governments of many of the developing countries see it as their right to use their environment as they wish. They do not believe they should have to suffer economically by conserving important ecosystems when the developed world has already destroyed the majority of their own environments in order to develop economically.
Another cause of lack of environmental protection globally, is the fact that many multi-national corporations pay others to lobby on their behalf to keep environmental policy and legislation lenient. Many businesses see the need to change the way their economic activities are conducted as threatening, so there is political resistance when it comes to proposing ways to implement appropriate measures.
There is also the possibility of religion contributing to the destruction of the environment. Most religions preach that humans were created in God’s image and lead people to believe they are a “super power” above all other species. Humans are portrayed as the dominant species from the beginning of time and the environment is owned by humans to do with as we wish. With current population growth, it is also important to mention the convictions of religion when it comes to birth control. At this time, with the huge strain we already place on resources and the environment, it is important we start to consider the need for population control globally.